john galliano

Spectacular Fall 2003 John Galliano Bias Cut Mauve Purple Silk Dress w Draped Arm Panels

This dress is from John Galliano's own label and is an incredible example of his work from this time period. This is a production piece that was not shown on the runway but would have been made in limited quantities for the shops. For this season he had emphasized a glamorous hourglass shape mixed with nods to pinup girl lingerie style dressing. These bias cut dresses always harken back to his love of the 1930s and 1940s and you can see that influence in them. This dress with its cut out detailing and that fantastic draping of fabric across the shoulders is absolutely beautiful. This is classic Galliano and is extremely flattering once on the body.

The dress is made out of a deep mauve purple silk that has a slight bit of texture to it. It is completely cut on the bias in that signature cut he does so well and that we all love. The dress falls from a delicate strap that curves up and behind the neck and then it drapes down and over the body to the floor. It is very beautiful. The bias cut of it allows the dress to skim and drape over you so that it shows every curve but is not overly fitted. The seaming is highly reminiscent of the work you see from the twenties and thirties. The fabric has been pieced together with dropped and angled panels throughout to create the beautiful shape that you see here. The dress is suspended from tiny straps that curve up and around the neck. The strap meets and then drops down the centre of the back and panels are suspended from it. These curving panels are fascinating. They can hang down and under the arms at the side or you can drape your arms through them to create that beautiful curving panel at the back that you see in some of the photos. We tried to style and show it in the various ways it can be worn and I love the versatility of it. I think that on a real body you might even be able to get clever and do some other styling tricks with them as well. The dress glides over the body past the bust, waist and hips and then flares out as it reaches the hem. On one side of the dress it buttons to close with a row of his signature tightly spaced buttons covered in the same silk and then on the other side the fabric is gathered in and up into a wired circle. The circle is open in the centre and the panels that gather into the circle have been cut out and opened so that it forms the shape of a flower trailing over one hip. The dress is lined in a crepe silk but you could choose to remove that lining and have that side be completely bare so that your skin showed through if you wished. I have seen this dress in another colour where someone did that and it made it that much more sexy. It is an incredible feat of patterning. The dress is even better in person and on the body as the static photos cannot fully convey how a bias cut dress moves. They only truly come to life when worn. Excellent condition with a minor note below.

Fully lined in a slightly deeper purple silk crepe and closes at the side with a series of silk covered buttons. I see perhaps a tiny pull in the fabric here and there which happens with this fabric and a bit of shininess here and there from pressing near seams. All minor and mentioned for accuracy. Tagged a FR42, GB14, US8. The bias cut should allow it to fit a range of sizes with it just draping more in a smaller frame

Bust: 16-19" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 13-16" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: 18-21" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 63" from top of shoulder to hem

Modern Sizing Equivalent: SML-LRG

Item# DD4599

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Please review all measurements carefully. More often than not, vintage garments do not fit any size category exactly. If in doubt, measure a garment of your own that fits and is a similar cut and compare it's measurements to the listed measurements below.